Savor the flavors of the season with this easy Air Fryer Nut Roast. Crafted with love and perfect for vegans, it’s a nutritious delight bursting with nutty flavor that doesn’t compromise on taste. Whether it’s Christmas, Thanksgiving, or just a family dinner, this roast is sure to shine.
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Why you’ll love making this Air Fryer Nut Roast
- When we talk about an air fryer nut roast, we’re referring to a hearty dish that brings out the best in nuts. Roasting the nuts first not only gives them that crisp texture but also intensifies their natural flavors.
- Using an air fryer means we’re cutting back on the excess oil commonly used in traditional roasting. You’ll still get that delicious crispy finish with fewer calories and fats.
- Whether you’re hosting a holiday feast, a dinner party, or just fancy some comfort food, this dish is always a hit. It’s that ideal blend of comfort and gourmet that never fails to please a crowd.
- Made with 100% pure plant-based ingredients, this easy Nut Roast recipe is a delightful vegan recipe. It’s a testament that delicious holiday dinners can be entirely free from animal products!
Ingredients you’ll need
You’ll need all the ingredients shown in the photograph below.
How to Make Air Fryer Nut Roast with Step-By-Step Instructions
You don’t have to make your own cranberry sauce, but it does make such a difference to the flavor.
A complete printable recipe and the measurements in both US customary and metric are available in the recipe card below.
For the Cranberry Sauce (Optional)
Begin by making the cranberry sauce. In a pan, combine water, sugar, and orange juice, bringing the mix to a boil over high heat.
Add in cranberries, orange zest, and a pinch of salt, bringing it back to a boil. After that, reduce the heat to let the cranberries burst open, typically taking about 10 minutes.
Once done, remove from the heat, stir in some vanilla extract, and mash to your desired consistency.
Whether you like it chunky or smooth, it’s your call! This sauce can be served slightly warm or at room temperature.
For the Nut Roast
Preheat the air fryer to 300°F/150°C if needed. Spread out a mix of Brazil nuts, walnuts, hazelnuts, and pecan nuts in an air fryer basket.
Roast nuts for around 8-10 minutes, giving the mixed nuts a good shake halfway. Once roasted, set them aside to cool.
While those air fryer roasted nuts are cooling, boil your chopped parsnips in a pot of salted water until soft, which should take about 10-15 minutes. After draining them, return to the pan to mash and set aside.
Next, in a large frying pan over medium heat, heat olive oil before adding the onions.
Aim for a rich caramelized color (dark brown), stirring regularly to prevent them from sticking and burning, for around 12-15 minutes.
Add red chili and garlic for an aromatic taste and cook for another minute. Add brown lentils, mushrooms, carrots, red pepper, and tomato paste.
Stir it all together and cook until the carrots begin to soften.
Mix in breadcrumbs, fresh herbs like rosemary, sage, and thyme, along with the spices: ground allspice, smoked paprika, and ground nutmeg.
Combine everything with vegetable stock and let it simmer until the liquid has been fully absorbed. Remove the pan from the heat.
In a food processor, blend half of your air fryer roasted nuts into a fine meal.
Roughly chop the rest with a sharp knife, and add the nuts, along with some roughly chopped cooked chestnuts, to your mix.
Add orange zest, fold the mashed parsnips in for a well-combined thick mixture, and season with salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste.
Finally, transfer the mix to a vegan butter-greased loaf tin. Press it down firmly, as compact as possible, and make sure the top is smooth in line with the tin.
Cook it in your air fryer, covered with foil, for about 45 minutes, checking halfway through. Uncover and bake for an additional 6-7 minutes.
When your nut roast is ready, it’ll be crispy on top. Remove it from the air fryer and leave it to cool for 10 – 15 minutes.
Remove it from the loaf pan by placing a plate on top of it and then turning it upside down; your cooked nut loaf should easily fall out of the tin.
Note: Cook time may vary between air fryer brands so add a few extra minutes if needed.
To serve, cut into slices and serve with all the trimmings!
Recipe Notes and Expert Tips
- Consistency: When processing half the nuts to create a nut meal, aim for a consistency similar to breadcrumbs. This will help bind your roast, ensuring it’s firm yet moist. For the other half, a rough chop adds texture and bite, making every slice a delightful mix of crunchy and smooth.
- Gluten-Free: If you’re going for a gluten-free version, there are plenty of gluten-free breadcrumbs available in stores that work just as well!
- Store-bought roasted nuts: If you’re in a pinch, store-bought roasted nuts can be a time-saver. However, roasting nuts fresh in the air fryer does provide an unmatched flavor. If you’re using store-bought, just adjust the seasoning to taste. Other favorite nuts like almonds, cashew nuts, or pecans can be added in as well.
- A little dry: If your nut roast turns out drier than you’d like, gravy or the cranberry sauce in the recipe can be a savior. Also, when reheating, a splash of vegetable stock or a dab of vegan butter can help reintroduce some moisture.
- Oven-baked version: This recipe is optimized for air frying, however, we also have an oven-baked version if that’s more your thing. It’s great for when you’re cooking other things in the oven as well like roasted vegetables.
- Add dried fruit: Dried fruits like apricots, raisins, or cranberries can add a sweet contrast to the savory mix. Just make sure they’re finely chopped so they integrate well with the other ingredients.
- Breadcrumbs: Create your own breadcrumbs! Just toss a couple of bread slices into your food processor and blend until crumbly. It’s simple and cost-effective.
- Oil swaps: If you’re out of olive oil, opt for another healthy oil like avocado oil or refined coconut oil.
- No fresh herbs on hand? Dried herbs are a great substitute.
- Missing parsnips? Swap in a sweet potato. It’ll offer a slightly different taste, but equally scrumptious.
- Fresh out of oranges? Opt for clementines, satsumas, or even lemons. If you decide on lemons, the zest can add a unique, zesty twist to your nut roast. Still delightful!
How to Store Leftovers
Before storing your nut roast, make sure it has cooled down to room temperature. This prevents condensation, which could make the roast soggy.
Store the leftover nut roast in an air-tight container in the fridge for up to 4-5 days. This preserves its freshness and ensures that it doesn’t absorb any odors from other foods in your fridge.
If you’re out of containers, wrapping it tightly in parchment paper before placing it in a freezer bag or a zip-lock bag works wonders, too.
To freeze, cut the nut roast into slices and freeze them in a single layer on a baking sheet.
Once they have frozen solid, store the slices in an airtight container (we use freezer bags) with a slice of parchment paper between each slice to prevent them from sticking together.
When you’re ready for leftovers, reheating in an air fryer is ideal. It restores the crispy exterior while keeping the inside moist.
A few minutes at a medium heat setting should be perfect. Just keep an eye on it to prevent it from drying out.
We’ve even been known to have a nut roast sandwich the next day; it makes for a healthy snack and a great way to use up leftovers.
What to Serve with a Nut Roast
Nut roast is so versatile you’ll be amazed at the number of delicious dishes that it compliments.
Holiday Veggie Sides
Here for the sides? When preparing a holiday feast, the sides are a feat in themselves!
Roasting vegetables in the oven or, even better, in your air fryer makes for a hearty side to your Thanksgiving or Christmas dinner.
If cranberry sauce isn’t your thing, then why not try some hot sauce with it?
A fresh salad complements the rich flavors of our nut roast beautifully.
A festive dinner spread wouldn’t be complete without a festive drink!
More air fryer recipes for you to try
We’ve got so many easy recipes for you to try, from main meals to whipping up a delicious snack; there’s something for everyone.
- Air Fryer Vegan Ham
- Air Fryer Black Bean Burger
- Air Fryer Frozen Brussels Sprouts
- Air Fryer Crinkle Cookies
- Air Fryer Green Beans
Easy Air Fryer Nut Roast Recipe
For the Cranberry Sauce
- ½ cup Water
- ½ cup Orange juice freshly squeezed BUT zest it first
- 2 tbsp Sugar
- 12 oz Cranberries fresh or frozen
- Orange Zest of one orange
- 1 pinch Salt
- ½ tsp Vanilla extract
For the Nut Roast
- 3½ oz Brazil nuts
- 3½ oz Walnuts
- 3½ oz Hazelnuts
- 3½ oz Pecans
- 2 Parsnips roughly diced
- 2 tbsp Olive oil
- 2 Red onions finely chopped
- 1 Fresh red chilli finely chopped
- 3 Cloves of garlic minced
- 7 oz Brown lentils cooked
- 7 oz Chestnut mushrooms finely sliced
- 5 oz Carrots grated
- 1 Red pepper finely chopped
- 2 tbsp Tomato paste
- 3½ oz Wholemeal breadcrumbs
- 2 sprigs Fresh rosemary finely chopped
- 1 sprig Fresh sage finely chopped
- 9 sprigs Fresh thyme finely chopped
- ¼ tsp Ground allspice
- ¼ tsp Smoked paprika
- ¼ tsp Ground nutmeg
- 1 cup Vegetable stock
- 3½ oz Cooked chestnuts crumbled
- Zest of 1 orange
- Salt and pepper to taste
- Vegan butter to prepare loaf tin
For the Cranberry Sauce
- Over high heat, bring a pan of water, orange juice, and sugar to a boil. Add the cranberries, orange zest, and salt, return to a boil, and then lower the heat to a gentle boil until the cranberries have burst open approximately 10 minutes.½ cup Water, ½ cup Orange juice, 2 tbsp Sugar, 12 oz Cranberries, Orange Zest, 1 pinch Salt
- Remove from the heat, add vanilla extract, and stir to combine. If preferred, mash the cranberries with the back of a fork until you get your desired consistency. Serve slightly warm or at room temperature.½ tsp Vanilla extract
For the Nut Roast
- If needed, preheat your air fryer to 300°F/150°C.
- Spread your Brazil nuts, walnuts, hazelnuts, and pecans in your air fryer basket, and roast them for 8-10 minutes, shaking halfway through; when done, set them aside to cool.3½ oz Brazil nuts, 3½ oz Walnuts, 3½ oz Hazelnuts, 3½ oz Pecans
- Meanwhile, while your nuts are roasting, add your chopped parsnips to a pan of boiling salted water and cook until they are soft, approximately 10 – 15 minutes. When they are cooked, drain the water, return them to the pan, mash them, and set them aside.2 Parsnips
- Over medium heat, heat your olive oil in a large frying pan, and add the onions. and fry for approximately 12 – 15 minutes until they have turned dark brown and are starting to caramelize, stirring often to stop the onions from sticking and burning. Next, add red chili and garlic, stir to combine, and cook for 1 minute. Now add in your brown lentils, mushrooms, carrots, red pepper, and tomato paste and stir to combine and cook until the carrot has started to soften. approximately 15 – 20 minutes.2 tbsp Olive oil, 2 Red onions, 1 Fresh red chilli, 3 Cloves of garlic, 7 oz Brown lentils, 7 oz Chestnut mushrooms, 5 oz Carrots, 2 tbsp Tomato paste, 1 Red pepper
- Add breadcrumbs, fresh rosemary, fresh sage, fresh thyme, ground allspice, smoked paprika, and ground nutmeg, and stir to combine. Pour in vegetable stock, stir to combine all the ingredients, and simmer over very gentle heat until all the liquid has been absorbed. Remove your pan from the heat.3½ oz Wholemeal breadcrumbs, 2 sprigs Fresh rosemary, 1 sprig Fresh sage, 9 sprigs Fresh thyme, ¼ tsp Ground allspice, ¼ tsp Smoked paprika, ¼ tsp Ground nutmeg, 1 cup Vegetable stock
- Take the cool roasted nuts, place half of them in your food processor, and blitz them until they are a fine nut meal. Roughly chop the remaining nuts into varying sizes to your own preference. Roughly break up the cooked chestnuts. Add the nut meal, the chopped nuts, and the chestnuts, and stir to combine. Add orange zest, and add the amount that you personally prefer. Finally, add mashed parsnips and add them to the nut roast mixture, folding them in to create a well-combined thick mixture. Taste and season with salt and freshly ground black pepper.3½ oz Cooked chestnuts, Zest of 1 orange, Salt and pepper
- Wipe vegan butter all over the insides of your loaf tin, to ensure the nut roast doesn't stick. Now, add the nut roast mixture to the prepared loaf tin. Press firmly down on the mix so it compacts tightly into the loaf tin, and ensure you have a smooth even top in line with the loaf tin.Vegan butter to prepare loaf tin
- Place your prepared nut roast in the air fryer. Cover with foil and cook for 45 minutes (check it's progress halfway through), then remove the foil and bake for 6-7 minutes. When your nut roast is ready, it'll be crispy on top, remove it from the air fryer and leave it to cool for 10 – 15 minutes. Remove from the loaf tin by placing a plate on top of the loaf tin and then turning it upside down; your cooked nut loaf should easily fall out of the tin. To serve, cut into slices and serve with all the trimmings!
- Freeze in portions
If you aren’t going to eat a whole nut roast, then cut it into slices, open freeze the slices on a baking tray in a single layer overnight, then store the slices in freezer bags, cut a piece of baking paper, and place it in between each slice, this will stop them from sticking together
- Add fruit
Some people like dried fruit in their nut roasts, so try adding dried apricots or dried cranberries, you can then serve it with cranberry sauce
- Save money
Make your own breadcrumbs, just put a couple of slices of bread in your food processor and blitz them until they are breadcrumbs – easy
- No fresh herbs?
Use dried herbs instead
- Don’t have any parsnips?
Try a sweet potato instead, it’ll change the flavor slightly, but will still be delicious
- Out of oranges?
Use clementines, satsumas, or even lemons, adding the zest instead. Adding lemon zest will give a lemony flavor to your nut roast, which is different, but still works well.
If you’re out of olive oil, opt for another healthy oil like avocado oil or refined coconut oil.
When processing half the nuts to create a nut meal, aim for a consistency similar to breadcrumbs. This will help bind your roast, ensuring it’s firm yet moist. For the other half, a rough chop adds texture and bite, making every slice a delightful mix of crunchy and smooth.
If you’re going for a gluten-free version, there are plenty of gluten-free breadcrumbs available in stores that work just as well!
Store-bought roasted nuts
If you’re in a pinch, store-bought roasted nuts can be a time-saver. However, roasting nuts fresh in the air fryer does provide an unmatched flavor. If you’re using store-bought, just adjust the seasoning to taste. Other favorite nuts like almonds, cashew nuts, or pecans can be added in as well.
This recipe is optimized for air frying, however, we also have an oven-baked version if that’s more your thing. It’s great for when you’re cooking other things in the oven as well like roasted vegetables.
Please note that nutrient values are estimates only. Variations can occur due to product availability and manner of food preparation. Nutrition may vary based on methods of origin, preparation, freshness of ingredients, and other factors.
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